Gandiva Café: A Night of Healthy Eating & Archery

Hailing from the university of green-blooded archers, I have always had a fascination for the archery sport. So when Gellie invited fellow bloggers to the event, my date and I didn't hesitate to say yes.

Yesterday, Gandiva Café and Archery Range treated bloggers to a night of health and wellness appreciation through introducing vegetarianism, yoga and archery. Although not many bloggers made it to the event held at Ortigas due to the heavy rains and traffic-congested streets, attendees such as ourselves found interest on the topics briefly discussed.


Gandiva started off as a 2009 venture of an archery-enthusiastic family to make the sport more known and accessible in the country. However as of today, Gandiva expanded not only to promote archery but to also encourage healthy eating and living through offering vegetarian and vegan-friendly food products made from locally grown ingredients.

With Chef Lali Balagtas, a lacto vegetarian coming from a full-blown vegetarian family, heading the Gandiva kitchen, we were off to a healthy dinner.

We were first served a plate of the Gandiva VG Burger (P198) with a slice of Four-Cheese Pizza (P225 for 12-inch; P355 for 18-inch).


Being carnivorous, my date and I were initially wary that the burger might taste bitter from all the vegetable fillings. However, we ended up loving the Gandiva VG Burger!


The vegan burger is made with onions, tomato, mustard, pickles, eggless mayonnaise and a tasty patty made from soya bean pulp. The buns sandwiching the healthy fillings were also healthy whole grain breads with a sweet glaze on the crust. Although the Gandiva VG Burger is not as juicy as your regular 100 percent pure beef burger, it sure tasted great for something without the sinfully good meat.


Gandiva's Four-Cheese Pizza may not be the best cheesy pizza I have ever tasted, but it was very satisfying. Oozing with sweetness from assorted cheeses -- cheddar, parmesan, mozzarella and white cheese, this slice was light on the palate yet still interesting taste-wise. I also love the very thin and crunchy crust which is really crispy and nice to munch.

We were then served with a plate of their Tuna Pesto (P198) and slices each of the Tomato Basil Pizza (P220 for 12-inch; P350 for 18-inch) and Bacon Cheeseburger Pizza (P275 for 12-inch; P420 for 18-inch).


The Tuna Pesto was really interesting as Gandiva did not use real tuna, but undisclosed veggie meat. However, the veggie tuna strips still tasted similar to tuna but lacking that particular fishy quality. The pesto pasta dish on the other hand, had a light and subtle herby taste. Both my date and I find it a little lacking in salt and pepper though.

Gandiva's Tomato Basil Pizza is considered a bestseller, and I understand why. The basil leaves puree gave out an herby flavor which nicely complimented the bed of white cheese. The slice of Bacon Cheeseburger Pizza however, did not taste too interesting. It was a plain-tasting pizza which was only saved by its nice and crispy crust.


I thought the servers were giving us the same kinds of pizzas, but I was surprised to see that my date got a different one. His was a slice of Gandiva's Veggie Supreme Pizza (P275 for 12-inch; P420 for 18-inch), a vegetarian take on the Supreme-flavored pizza, loaded with bell pepper, onions, tomatoes, black olives and a double treat of veggie meat ham and tuna. I wasn't able to take a bite out of this slice but since my date didn't complain, it was probably good.

Last to be served was one of Gandiva's sweetest pride, their guiltless and eggless non-dairy chocolate cake served to us in a form of a cupcake.


I'm not very knowledgeable with desserts so I don't really know if the absence of eggs and dairy can alter the taste of a cake. But what I know though, is that the structure and texture of the cake may not be as fluffy and moist without eggs. Although there are tons of bakers and dessert shops already offering non-dairy and eggless cakes, this is my first time to try one. No regrets though, as Gandiva's version was very satisfying.

The chocolate icing tasted bittersweet which I love as I am more of a dark chocolate fan (than milk chocolates that is). The chocolate base cake was also tasty and moist. For a non-dairy eggless cake, it was pretty good. But of course, I personally still prefer the fluffier and gooey-er dairy-ful and egg-ful chocolate cake.


But good news to non-vegetarians and even to ovo-lacto vegetarians 'cause Gandiva Café also serves desserts with milk and eggs.

Of course, after sampling the vegetarian food offerings of the café, we were excited to try the other (aside from eating) interesting activity at Gandiva -- free archery trial.


Just across the café is Gandiva's 9-lane, 18-meter range. If you're interested to try and get a feel of archery, you can visit them 'cause they offer free 6-arrow trial!


For the Bloggers Night and Wellness Fair though, we can win different things with shooting a balloon down. But as much as I would love to prove my focus and dexterity, my left arm is just too feeble and I was shaking the arrow shooting all throughout the 6 tries. Yes, I failed.


But although I didn't get anything from the free archery trial, attendees still got some souvenirs. They gave out Sport Sprays and Gandiva shirts. Well, my date though got a Slimmers World P1,500-worth Gift Certificate for successfully shooting down a balloon. (Sige na, siya na!)


There were also sponsors exhibiting their brand and products during the night. One of which is a Coco Sugar product by Veredium Marketing, Inc. We got a free pack of these gourmet health sugar made from coconut sap which I have yet to try.


THE VERDICT

Overall, Gandiva's Bloggers Night and Wellness Fair was a nice and fun evening for both the attendees and organizers. Although I am far from being even the lightest type of a vegetarian, I still enjoyed the food. Everything was tasty and not much different from meat-containing dishes. I even commented to Chef Lali that if I can eat these food items everyday, then I won't mind being converted to a vegetarian overnight.

However if I had to nitpick everything that happened last night, I would have to say that their service can be improved more. Although the waiters were friendly and accommodating, they had some slip-ups in serving our food -- glass that was loudly banged on the table (which is probably unintentional), and cupcake that accidentally fell in our bowl of hot sauce instead of being served on our empty plate. Sanitation can also be improved. Although the whole place was clean, there was an annoying fly which wanted to take a bite on our food.

Taste - 4/5
Ambiance - 3.5/5
Service - 3.5/5
Price - 4/5
Overall Value - 4/5

(Plus point for their free archery trial!)

Archery Range & Equipment Rental
Range Fees - P150/hr
Equipment Rental - P200/hr
Instructor's Fees - P250/hr

Gandiva Café and Archery Range
7/F One Corporate Centre Bldg.,
Julia Vargas St. cor Meralco Ave.,
Ortigas, Pasig City
(02) 638-8711
Official Website
Facebook Page

31 comments:

  1. Your bf is soooo lucky or magaling talaga siya so he got the GC? Hehe. Sayang wasn't able to attend the event. Hope to see you next time Sumi :)

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  2. The thing about vegan-friendly desserts is that they have their own substitutes for the ingredients. Sometimes gluten-free desserts use cornstarch as a replacement for flour, and they also use some different kinds of flour as well.

    Its interesting to try out the difference between the usual food to the vegan ones.

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  3. I saw your name in the list of attendees. Like Gellie, for some reason, I was not able to come too. Well, hope to see you in an event next year tho.

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  4. The pasta looks good! Where is the yoga studio located? :)

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  5. Great post here...Yes, love their place even its too far...

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  6. Hey!!! You were there? I knew it! I thought I saw you! Haha. I love the place, but I didnt get to shoot anything. :( too bad. Hope to meet you soon :)

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  7. Hi Sumi! Great blog! I think I read till the beginning LoL. Very captivating photos, you take great shots. Hope you can join us on Colorful Weekend! It's a link party that I host every week{end} where everyone links up a post with their colorful photos. It can be anything... and old or new post, kids, landscape, crafts, food, anything! Hope to see you there sometime. :)

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  8. First time I've heard of a resto with free shooting haha. Really love your pics. I also read your entry on Stacy's (haven't done mine yet!) and I'm amazed you're so quick on writing your reviews! I should be more like you haha. See you in our next event!

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  9. Archery and food. Never thought they would make a great combo but it seems I'm wrong! I've always wanted to continue archery. PE ko yun nung college hehe

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  10. Sounds like fun always wanted to try archery! Maybe we could try it out sometime.

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  11. we were supposed to go but the traffic was horrible. Wala kami maabutan kung sakali pumunta kami ni jen. wahhh sayang.. I really wanted to try the archery range. Secret wish ko yan.. haha! Thanks for giving us a sneak peek!

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  12. @Carmel: Gandiva will be holding yoga classes courtesy of the National Yoga Club. You can give them (Gandiva) a call for inquiries.. :)

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  13. @Ruth: Ohmy! It was you pala, the pretty lady in red? I was thinking that you look familiar, yet I can't quite figure out if I should approach you. We were very shy that night, but hope to greet and have a chat with you on other events in the future.. :)

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  14. Whoa! I miss my college days! Archery is my PE subject. Love those bow and arrows! :-)

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  15. free 6-arrow trial is awesome. Ang sarap lang kumain ng kumain

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  16. this cafe is not for me, magugutom ako dito. =) congrats to your bf.

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  17. Nice! I saw your name nga on Jiggs email. Another event I wasn't able to attend. hehehe! Next time hoping. =)

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  18. Wow that's a nice experience! :)

    BTW, Sumi thanks for visiting my blog. Just want to ask, since I just began blogging actively again, do you know of any good blogs I could follow? Haha thanks :)

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  19. Food looks yummy and the archery bit looks exciting enough to try! Only problem with me is I have no upper body strength haha

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  20. Sorry Sumi, I wasn't able to come too. I kinda needed a break from all the traffic in the Metro eh. Kaka stress! See you soon! x

    Bec of http://mygorgeouspinkcheeks.blogspot.com

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  21. wow! I want to try this too! gsto ko ung cupcakes! hahaha! :)

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  22. I want those cuppiecakes. ^_^

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  23. I wanna try the choco cupcake, parang super sarap! Thanks for sharing these :)

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  24. Sodium Erythorbate *nom nom nom nom*December 12, 2011 at 3:17 PM

    I wanna try that too..uhm...but first I have to buy a set of bow and arrows...just think of all the stuff I could do with it..oh it would be so cool...shooting down birds..fruits..antennas..hanged clothes..birds.. XD

    just kidding

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  25. will put this on my list of must try.. =)

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  26. I used to play an archer character in a MMORPG and it's one of the things on my bucket list - to know how to use a bow and arrow, and actually shoot something. :)) This was too cool! Plus, that dark chocolate cupcake looks so delish! :)

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  27. interesting!! will check this place out

    fran
    www.frannywanny.com

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  28. I went here a couple of months ago, tried the archery thingy using vouchers, but haven't tried the foods though. Will be back soon :)

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  29. the food looks different but the cupcakes is mouthwatering :)

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  30. Angg cool ng place haha! Makapag-try nga ng archery haha!

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